ORONO – The University of Maine System is mourning the passing of the Hon. John Lisnik, a tireless advocate for Maine students who served as the System’s liaison to the Legislature for more than two decades.
UMS Chancellor Dannel Malloy and UMPI President Ray Rice issued the following joint statement:
“John Lisnik was a true and selfless public servant, who dedicated his life to the betterment of our country, the County and our campuses. Few people who have spent their careers in and around politics are as well-respected and well-liked as John remains to this day.
“The affordable access tens of thousands of Maine students have had to our public universities is owed in large part to John’s highly effective representation of our System in the State House. On behalf of the entire University of Maine System and especially the campus community at UMPI, we extend our condolences to John’s family – especially his beloved wife, Donna – and our great gratitude for his legacy of service to our students, the System and the state.”
John Lisnik’s Service to Maine’s Public Universities
A Vietnam Veteran and former legislator representing Presque Isle, Lisnik was Assistant to the Chancellor for Governmental Relations at the UMS from December of 1990 to his retirement in 2015. Even as he battled cancer, Lisnik continued to support Maine’s public universities, making calls on behalf of the successful $49 million UMS workforce infrastructure bond campaign in 2018 from the Dana Farber Institute in Boston while he was receiving treatment.
Ground will soon be broken on a new state-of-the-art engineering education classroom and laboratory building at UMaine for which Lisnik helped secure $50 million in State support. The investment is the largest one-time public investment in the University of Maine System.
Since 2017 Lisnik has also served on the Board of Visitors for the University of Maine at Presque Isle, his alma mater.